Bainfield continued their escape from the relegation zone in the A section of the indoor bowls Premier League with a positive display that resulted in a comfortable 100-78 victory over foot-of-the-table Inverclyde at the Hutchison Crossway stadium.
Wins on three rinks, skipped by Paul O’Donnell, Craig Moss and Gavin Smith, and a narrow defeat on the other for James Hogg represented a pleasing team performance in what was a must-win match for the home side.
The victory has moved the Edinburgh club clear into third place with eight points. Aberdeen (six), Midlothian (six) and Inverclyde (four) are below Bainfield with two games to play. “This was a fixture that was crying out for us to win,” said team manager John Bell.
Inverclyde – with a home game against section leaders West Lothian and a visit to Midlothian to come – seem destined to fill the automatic relegation place, but Bell is well aware that Bainfield are not yet out of the woods in terms of avoiding the play-off zone.
And in that respect Bell would have been happier if Bainfield had enhanced their shot margin bank – now standing at minus eight – with a stronger finish against Inverclyde rather than seeing his team slip from 32 up to only 16 before adding an additional six to 22 with a 9-3 count on the final end.
Ironically, the highlight of that 21st end came from the only losing Bainfield rink with Hogg and his front three of Daniel Gormley, Alan Brown and Darren McKenny carding a super count of 6.
Bainfield had controlled the flow of the match from the fourth end but, despite gaining the upper-hand, it wasn’t until the 14th end that they celebrated their first (and only) clean-sweep with a 7-0 count that pushed them into a 70-45 lead.
Bainfield won the first seven ends, 38-23, helped by the contribution of a 7 from the rink of team captain Paul O’Donnell. They won the second 32-22 and lost the third, 30-33.